To all my friends in SODELPA I have a question I think you need to ponder.

I would not be telling you anything if I said that Frank Bainimarama has broad approval in the Indo-Fijian community but the question you have to ask is: what has he done to earn that approval?

It is certainly not this ‘reform’ of the sugar industry. He made himself Minister for Sugar but he’s provided no leadership at all, apart from taking on the chore of jet-setting to ISO meetings. He has brought to the edge of destruction an industry built with the sweat and tears of generations of Indo-Fijians.

So what is the source of the Bainimarama appeal, which has allowed a bumptious, poorly educated thug to have this broad appeal among Indo-Fijians. If I had to single out one thing that’s given him a bit of appeal it would be his decision to call us all Fijian.

It was always confusing trying to explain to people who didn’t know Fiji that only some of our population were ‘Fijian’. We need to face the fact that our unique history as a small island state in the Pacific is not well known in the wide world, so this linguistic anomaly inevitably caused confusion, not to say awkwardness outside Fiji.

The 1987 coup was more than a dispossession of basic democratic rights. It was a time when people did not feel safe, when they didn’t know what would happen next after experiencing a coup that struck like lightning out of a clear blue sky, but the dispossession went beyond that. It was a dispossession of a right to a sense of identity. Bainimarama’s decision on a new national name healed wounds more effectively than any number of apologies from Rabuka.

Bainimarama hit gold with his decision to call us all Fijian, but let’s not give him more credit than is due. His feelings about this are more likely to spring from empathy for the Kai Loma identity rather than empathy for our Indo-Fijian brothers and sisters. Frank has long had a sense of disdain for things ‘native’; he sees himself as a progressive, a town dweller, not come kai colo from the village, he went to Marist, not QVS, he worked his way up through the ranks, he’s an achiever, not an idle Bauan.

SODELPA leaders would be doing their cause a favour by giving thought to the feelings of their fellow Fijians. This is a change for the better which would be better still if it had support from all communities.

One of the first things a reconvened BLV could do is give its blessing to our new national identity and the Party positioned to provide the leadership needed to do this is SODELPA. Ro Teimumu would be acting as a truly national leader if she pledged to take this to the BLV. It would not be right to speak for the BLV but she can speak for herself as someone who wants to lead the whole nation.

Sa dri yani!

7 thoughts on “

  1. indo Fijian community supports Bainimarama for Land and LAND only ( they dont care about B)…..If previous government was racist…most of them would still be in the state of poverty as in India today…..They like Bainimarama becasue Bainimarama offers them priority over i-taukei. I taukei led government of the past does not restrict their right to live and sweat for themselves….and it certainly doesn’t go an interfere with their Culture, beliefs or tradition, even when the constitution proudly state a Christian country. It was the government christian principles that gave them the right to build their temples and worship their gods ….but since Bainimarama, these Indo Fijians ( biggest Liumuri)…they started to swear and curse I taukei insitutiions. The very instutions that protected them and gave them the freedom and the environment to work hard and become millionaires and occupy the high echelon of the Fijian business world. Now with some space to flex their muscles…”hear what they can say and imagine what they can do”…..just look at India to get a taste!. “Think you can own whatever land you land on….to Itaukei the Land is not a dead thing you can claim and Buy!!!…….I taukei can never disconnected from their Land..not now not ever…and we will bleed to death to keep it in our hands.. YO ucan use for as long as you like – but cannot have it!. vosota sara! kwaca ga na vatu ike!.

  2. Why do Indofijians love Bainimarama? The answer to this question is simple: They see in him a bumbling moron who can be easily manipulated to do their betting. Indofijians also feel comfortable with VB because he is a good representation of his ethic group.

  3. I think Bhai and EyeArse have loudly torn down the institutions that give Taukeis special place as indigenous people…eg BLV abolished, Church influence been trimmed, chiefs told to focus on villages, drink homebrew under trees and not involved in national issues and politics, promise of easing up acquisition of Fijian lands for leasing to others etc….things that are special to Taukeis…these are matters that have troubled Indians for a long time and are behind all the communal and political ill feelings in the past. But what Bhai has done is to stir up Taukei resentment and because of EyeArse’s significant part played in this anti Fijian move Muslims have been thrown up as enemies of Taukeis. These anger from Taukeis will fester and grow if not addressed. Am sure that Taukeis have grown to feel brotherhood with Indians much quicker since independence and if we continue to have patience and allow the natural progress that had been happening up to 2006 under democratic systems we would resolve our communal differences very well without all the drama and angst associated with Bainimarama Dictatorship and lack of consultation with Fijians,,,coloured by extreme arrogance and violence and continuous threats. The cases of many inter-communal marrisges since independence is a good sign of the 2 communities getting on together very well,,,we go to school together, work together, play games together, join same social clubs and muck around together..inevitable we will get on well together increasingly if given time to grow together under unimterrupted democratic parliamentary environment where the rule of law is paramount. Not the Bainimarama approach of tortures, murders, unaccountable rules by decrees, continuous media control, threats unaccountable use of Govt expenditures, control of judiciary and sheer thuggery by Bainimarama.

  4. But unfortunately she has failed before even having got the chance to lead the country.

    A rather poor home goal scored by her by allowing the likes of Qarese to run free with his racist bigoted unchristian views that she has chosen to show support by keeping quiet.

    Sad times for SODELPA, but also a bad reflection on all women in society who want to be considered as capable of having a higher position in running the country.

  5. Sodelpa maintains a contenscious issue like this needs to be discussed widely and especially with the Indigenous people of this nation. It is only fair. To say outright that we do not agree to it is perhaps the views of some party executives. It is not something that everyone would immediately write off within Sodelpa. What we are a party agree on is that we need to discuss this with all who call Fiji home but to fair to the first settlers of this nation, they need to be first consulted and wide discussions need to be undertaken on the merits of being all known as Fijians. The BLV of course to lead the discussions with the indigenous Fijians would be a great start. Vinaka.

  6. The leader is one who can rally people together for a cause. Frank has done that. Its not about the name only. Itaukei support for Frank is very high. In my view, more than sodelpa. Mark my words and wait for 17 sep.

  7. The fact this so-called ‘Fijian’ tag (which normally is accorded to Fiji’s indigenous population) is brought up again is pointing out clearly that the way Frank and his band of criminals have forcefully imposed it on other undemocratic and unlawful. As in all things they have dictatorially enforced changes without consulting the very people whose lives depend on such forceful, unlawful changes! It is not the right way to build a nation, let alone build bridges between races. The indigenous community was never given a say on this. They were never consulted on the abolishment of their chiefly institution either. No debate, no referendum, and no vote on the matter! How then on earth would there be no resentment and resistance from an indigenous community whose identity is being reconstructed without their say? As has been predicted by many in the past and till today, the unlawful changes that Frank and his band of thugs have been forcefully bringing on Fiji will one day blow up their faces. Regimes, especially ones that rise up from unlawful takeovers normally explode when resistance overtakes it! As for this imposition of the ‘Fijian’ tag on all Fiji citizens including the hundreds of chinese recently given passports, the stealing of the indigenous coummunity name and identity is yet another scandal of the Bainimarama regime. Bainikaiyum’s animal farm has hardly anything good to show for all such scandals!

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